Wow Satan's Black Wedding. Sure sounds like a horror movie. And it is. It's a horror movie from the 70s like you saw as a kid. It's got tombs and rats and people wearing Dracula teeth. You like horror movies right? Do you really need a plot synopsis? Okay well the devil saw this brother and sister playing near his Satanic chapel and loved them so much that he wanted them to get married and have special babies when they grew up, so he assigns his vampires (he has vampires) the task of making that happen. They don't count on the brother running away though, and like most evil minions they suck at catching guys so a painting of the devil's eyeball has to intervene. Stuff like that.

hey cool
Throwback late night horror
but YUCK
Yucky snogging scene

This is the kind of movie that stirs up a lot of ghosts for me. Takes me back to another life so long ago, when as a fresh teenager in the 80s I felt all grown up enough to not only watch Johnny Carson, but also whatever came on after him, which might well be something exactly like Satan's Black Wedding if the wind was just right for me to pull in Channel 2 out of Oakland on my little black and white TV.

And you know, I might still have been just barely young enough to get a slight tingle of thrill from the scary bits. This is not some highfalutin good movie by any means, but it could probably scare a kid. It pulls off a scene here and there, like when the vampire chick appears backlit in a doorway and you can't see the plastic teeth. Okay it's laughably bad at times...most of the time, but it's never boring bad and at least trying really hard to be spooky. You don't get that in a lot of so-called horror movies these days.

The score here too is a refreshing departure from the syrup of generic orchestral noise most movies are processed in. It's almost like an old silent movie with just a melancholy solo piano playing throughout, even during vampire fight scenes. I dig that offbeat feel of violence with non-action music.

I don't want to get too far off into good old days land here though. My god people were unattractive in the 70s. The clothes women wore back then would probably make even Elvira look flat chested and bony. And for the male lead the devil makes the odd choice of this incredibly bland turtleneck sweater guy to be the father of the antichrist. Plays a Hollywood actor of all things, which I believe could be correctly described as ironic.

And of all the guys I did not want to see in the throes of passion fish-facing some poor actress. In modern movies the sex is so cheap and emotionless that people barely even kiss, but in the 70s we'd have to see all this necking as they called it back then. One of my charming little eccentricities is I kind of hate seeing guys kiss women, especially this guy for some reason, and they just get obscene with it - long slurpy closeups of man lips sliding everywhere. God they actually nuzzle afterwards. At least he didn't have a {shudder} moustache. It took me out of the movie though and I couldn't quite get right again.

At first I thought this was going to be a subplot about him cheating on his wife, but when he suggested taking the affair back to his house I realised the movie just forgot he was married. It's full of that sort of mildly endearing badness, like how the act...performers often appear to be talking to someone outside the movie, or when the detective apparently didn't hear the director call action during his death scene. And thirty years later they even screw up the dull commentary track; you can hear the movie in their mics, playing slightly out of sync.

But what's bad is funny, and what's not bad is actually a little creepy, and it's got a foggy San Francisco vibe. Maybe it's just the imprinting of my youth, but even though I've seen way better horror movies over the years, the words "horror movie" still bring an image of something like this to my mind. Check it out, it's only an hour.

Line: "By human standards your children will be horribly deformed".